Etihad Follows Emirates, Suspends Flights To Erbil

Etihad’s flights to Basra and Baghdad will continue to operate as normal, the carrier said.



Abu Dhabi carrier Etihad Airways announced that it has suspended all flights to the Iraqi city of Erbil starting August 7, following the deteriorating security situation in parts of the country.

The airline also said that it will re-route its flights to avoid the airspace over conflict-hit areas in Iraq.

Etihad added that the safety of the airline’s passengers and staff is of “paramount importance”, and it will continue to monitor the security situation closely.

Flights to Basra and Baghdad, which have a daily risk assessment, will continue to operate as normal, the carrier said.

Airlines have become cautious about flying over conflict zones after the downing of a Malaysian Airlines jet MH 17 last month in Ukraine.

Dubai-based Emirates said last week that it will be suspending all flights to the Iraqi city of Erbil while re-routing its flights to other paths.

Other airlines that have announced the suspension of flights to Erbil include Air France, Royal Jordanian, British Airways, Qantas and Virgin Atlantic.

The US Federal Aviation Administration has also banned all the US airlines from flying over Iraq until further notice.

However Lufthansa, which had initially suspended flights to Erbil, has said that it has resumed flights to the Iraqi Kurdish city after a review of the security situation. The airline added that it will re-route its flights to avoid flying over the conflict zones in the country.